Tuesday, 21 September 2021 04:41 GMT

QNL and partners join forces to restore Beirut libraries, cultural institutions


(MENAFN- The Peninsula) Doha: In an initiative to support the reconstruction of Lebanese cultural institutions damaged by the explosion of Beirut Port in 2020, Qatar National Library (QNL), the International Alliance for the Protection of Heritage in Conflict Areas (ALIPH), the Unesco, and other partners joined forces to contribute to the rehabilitation of the buildings and archives of cultural institutions and school libraries in Lebanon.

Qatar National Library, in partnership with the Unesco Office in Lebanon, will implement several projects in a number of local libraries in Lebanon. This joint work will enhance the cooperation between QNL and Unesco to make more achievements in the field of documentary heritage preservation and promotion in the Arab region.

In parallel with Qatar National Library's plan to rehabilitate and restore libraries, the Geneva-based ALIPH is providing supplementary funding for the project. 

QNL and ALIPH are supporting the field work implemented by Prince Claus Fund, the French charitable association OEuvre d’Orient, and the Monumenta Orientalia organisation which deals with oriental antiquities, which are working in cooperation with local contractors to restore the Lebanese National Library, the Oriental Library and many other Lebanese cultural institutions that play an important role in preserving the country’s knowledge base and shaping the future of its societies.

The expanded project will include the reopening of both large and small cultural institutions and helping them resume their services during the rehabilitation phase. In addition to funding, QNL will provide professional support and the materials necessary to carry out conservation and maintenance, as well as post-disaster training and capacity-building programmes for relevant libraries and organi ations at the national level.

The efforts are within the framework of QNL role as ALIPH’s regional center for the preservation of library materials in the Arab countries and the Middle East.

Minister of State and President of Qatar National Library H E Dr. Hamad bin Abdulaziz Al Kuwari stressed the need to address the consequences of Beirut Port crisis in accordance with the responsibility entrusted to QNL with regard to preserving the knowledge and cultural heritage for future generations, and in a spirit of solidarity and cooperation to help Beirut rehabilitate its cultural institutions.

Al Kuwari added that it is at the heart of the Qatar National Librarys mission to work to ensure the acquisition of knowledge by protecting the legacy of the past, embracing the present, and helping to shape the future.

Stemming from this spirit and by working tirelessly with the partners in Beirut and around the world, QNL is committed to carrying out this great mission. After the active role made by the State of Qatar in supporting the rehabilitation of the Lebanese National Library in the aftermath of the civil war, it is determined once again to restore this cultural icon to its former glory, as well as the Oriental Library as one of the largest heritage libraries in the Middle East.

Stephane Ipert, Director of Distinctive Collections at Qatar National Library, said that QNL appreciates the work resulting from this partnership, noting that the new alliance and cooperation between the different organizations in this project is a focal point for its success. This is the first time that the material support is provided along with resources and training in this important cultural development effort in Lebanon.

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